Thursday, December 19, 2013

Ousted phone chief flees Alamo City and interview

Terrified, his wife fears for his life

San Antonio – Lights blazed through the night at John Foddrill's northwest San Antonio home tonight after the former city telecommunications chief fled with his wife to an undisclosed South Texas location to be with “friends who have my back.”

When The Legendary arrived to keep an appointment for a comprehensive interview based on revelations of names, facts and figures he has made over the past week regarding allegatons of city officials working in collusion with accountants and government inspectors to defraud bond underwriters and grant administrators for the past 25 years, we found only this enigmatic e-mail.

There was an article about the failing 911 system published today and I am not going to be home until I see how the City and SAPD responds to the truth being told about them and the danger to citizen's /first responder's lives that they have been concealing for years.

Keep your head down.”

In the article, a news writer revealed that 911 emergency police and fire calls experienced a 20 percent fail rate because dispatchers often placed callers on hold prior to even obtaining information as to the nature of callers' emergencies.

That article matches a series of such revelations over the years, including actual case files of dispatchers disciplined for sleeping on the job, hanging up on callers, and dropping their duties altogether during officer-related shootings.

Foddrill's allegations go much deeper than that. He has supplied The Legendary and other news outlets with actual recordings of meetings with special agents of the Housing and Urban Development department in which he detailed exactly how grant funds go unaccounted, spend on other projects, and the falsified figures turned over to accountants who sign off on audits supplied bond underwriters.

He alleges millions upon millions of dollars have been thereby misapplied and outright stolen through deceptive accounting practices. Officials really spent the money on office remodeling, and accounted for the shortages by falsifying pay records to show that certain employees worked hours they did not. 

About 20 percent of San Antonio's income comes from government grants.

But Foddrill's experience with government funding is one that shows a pattern of deception for the past 25 years, he says. When he tracked a 25 percent fail rate among emergency calls, he knew that money allocated to update the system's software and hardware requirements would cure the problem.

That's when the InformationTechnology manager informed him that “It's a money problem. We don't have any.

I had a $5.2 million a year budget and never had any money,” he recalls.

The allegations led to his dismissal under prejudice as the manager over the 911 system, a whistleblower trial in which officials including the Municipal Integrity Manager, city auditor and police and fire officials lied under oath and a judge decreed a take nothing judgment.

City investigators declared his allegations unfounded. The court decided there was a lack of evidence.

Nevertheless, Foddrill filed a complaint with the Securities Exchange Commission last May; he also filed information with the State Board of Accountancy alleging crooked accounting practices by CPA employed by the city as well as bond underwriters and federal government.

Foddrill and a Fire Department contract compliance manager were both subsequently banned from visiting City Hall and the Civic Plaza to obtain records that support their allegations. They have both filed suit in U.S. District Court in order to gain redress for deprivation of their civil rights. The judge signed a writ in October that enjoins police officias to allow both of them access to the premises.

His wife Susan lost her last nerve going into the night before the day for the face tp face, on-mike and camera interview. She demanded that they leave the area. "She's afraid they will kill me," he said, his voice wavering over a shaky cell phone connection.

Over the years, they have endured such terroristic practices as two police officers arriving in the wee hours of the morning to perform a “mental health check” by knocking on a neighbor's door and arousing his family in order to inquire with the Foddrills have any firearms. They asked if John Foddrill was in a fit mental condition to have guns.

Police officials have warned him that dispatchers could get mixed up between his address and that of his son, John Foddrill, Jr., who lives only a couple of blocks away. In another case, an officer warned him about standing next to his car where it was parked on the street in front of a municipal building. A police car coud come flying around the corner on some emergency and hit him or his car, killing or injuring him accidentally.

He fears being tasered to death, cuffed in a hogtied position and smothering for breath, or being beaten to death.

One may read more about the situation by reading these clippings:


  1. This is great journalism. I've followed this series with great interest. Again, great job.

  2. This is frightening!! While living in Boerne (NW of San Antonio, in Bexar Co.), the Sheriff's Dept. always responded promptly enough and we had no idea about the problems only a few miles down in SA. Glad we moved to a safer, more responsible & responsive community!! Thanks for the informative report!